Tuesday, 17 July 2012


Whether we are trying to lose weight or not, most of us have a strong emotional connection to food since our childhood. Our parents taught us to finish the food on the plate and not to waste it. Even if we are full, we feel compelled to finish the food off our plates. We are told 'when so many people are starving in the world, how can we throw food away?'. Achievements, rewards, good times, parties, celebrations meant lots of food. So food has always been associated with happiness, giving hardly any importance to how much do we really need to eat to be alive and what food groups can give us healthy nourishment. Fats, sweets, high calorie in certain foods, amount of total daily calorific intake was never a criteria when we eat. We are fascinated, tempted and lured by the taste, feel and appearance of food. Over the years, when we put on weight, we realize, we have to lose weight because it isn't healthy to be overweight and that we could be heading towards lifestyle diseases. Why should we wait to be overweight to come to this realization? Well, its not that we 'don't know' the consequences of overeating or consuming more food that our output, it's because we have a huge emotional bond and connection with food through out our lives.

Let's take a look at some more  factors that emotionally connect us with food.

* Eating when lonely
(no one was actually able to ward off loneliness by eating!)

* Eating because you are sad
(The problem or sadness won't be resolved through eating)

* It's wrong to throw food away. We shouldn't waste food
(So take just the right amount you want to eat in the first place. Stop when you feel full. If you have food remaining in your plate, throw it away. Don't stuff yourself)

* It tastes so good, I'll have some more.
(That's additional calories, which will turn into fat you have to fight to get off. And if you keep repeating it everytime you have extra helpings or servings, you are inviting more fat into your body)

* Eating to celebrate accomplishments and occasions
(That's okay, as long as you know what and how much you are consuming, and whether it's good for you and know when to stop).

How do we overcome emotional attachment towards food? Ask yourself a few important questions each time you decide what to cook while at home, or what to eat while you are outside - at restaurants, parties, dinners, office canteen, so on

1. Is this food really required  for my body?
2. Does this food contain lots of fat, sugar or high calories?
3. Will this food give me nourishment - the right carbohydrates, proteins, vitamins and minerals needed for my body ?
4. Will this food be heavy on my digestive organs and system?
5. Am I over eating?
6. What good does this food do for me, will it fill me with energy, health and vitality or will it make me sluggish?
7. Listen to your body. Is it telling you that it's not hungry or its full?

What we feed our body is sacred as it's for our body's proper functioning and survival. Everything we chose to eat should be aimed towards attaining a healthy body. It's okay to indulge in foods you enjoy, occasionally, but in moderation. Our body is like a vehicle we own, through which we experience everything in this world and we need to travel the journey of life, using this only vehicle till we die. If you want to keep it in top working condition, it's important to feed it with the right fuel - follow a balanced diet with lean meats, lots of vegetables, and fruits. Eliminate the fat and sugars, junk food and wheat. And learn to say 'No' to unhealthy food. Honor your body. Feed your body what it really requires, and not what the advertisements,  subtley lure you into eating.

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